While we cannot ignore the current state of our world, one thing we CAN do is help each other navigate this new normal together. Being part of an industry that provides people with fresh food, it's more important now than ever to think about how we can work efficiently.There are a number of ways we can do this. In addition to taking both long and short term action for our clients, customers and consumers, we also need to consider putting forth public relations efforts to complement and elevate those actions with trade media partners.
- Now is the time to reach out to trade media to continue to build and nurture those relationships. Whether it’s a quick email or phone call, keeping in touch with members of the media during this time is a great way to keep the momentum built thus far. The difference in outreach though is a pivot from the typical “what my brand is doing” angle, to a more “here to help” sentiment. By simply asking an editor what they are looking to cover at the moment and offering your brand’s resources can make a HUGE impact on the ease of their work during an otherwise stressful time.
- With tradeshows and in-person events being postponed or cancelled altogether, trade media relies on communication from brands just as much as brands rely on media to inform retailers and consumers. The editorial calendar put in place at the beginning of the year by trade publications is now subject to change for most, so being connected with the writer about their need for content can help streamline the news that brands want to share.
- If a press release is in the pipeline during this unprecedented time, ask yourself if this news is helpful or urgent. If it is neither, holding the news until it is more timely or rethinking the release's messaging altogether is worth considering. Another alternative is through exclusive editorial pieces with the trade. Rather than widely sharing a wordy release, start a conversation with specific members of the media to tell the brand story from a different perspective.
The bottom line: Communication is crucial during this time. A brand's ability to be strategic, and flexible enough to pivot from the current plan set in place to a new one is key to being helpful first with the media. In the end, a new outlook on working with trade media will not only help position a brand's trust, but help the fresh produce industry as a whole once things go back to a somewhat ''normal''.
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